The Student Learning Commons

The Learning Commons in UMF’s Mantor Library is a versatile place in which students can learn, collaborate, and socialize. It is a welcoming place where all students can feel comfortable. Students can reserve group study spaces, use the mobile whiteboards, re-arrange the furniture, access technology, and take advantage of the research support offered by Mantor Library.

Peer Tutoring

Tutoring is a free service provided by the University to currently enrolled students.

UMF tutors are students who help their peers help themselves. They share skills and study strategies that encourage independent learning.  Tutors support their peers in understanding difficult course content, planning and revising papers, or reviewing for exams and projects. All tutors are faculty recommended, have excelled in their courses, and are required to attend on-going training. Students should come prepared to peer tutoring by bringing assignments, textbooks, and notebooks. Tutors will ask students what they want to work on in their sessions. Tutoring is not a replacement for attending class and completing homework;  it is a supplement to study time.

Drop-By Peer Tutoring (Currently not offered for the 2020-21 year due to Covid-19 physical distancing restrictions)

Students who want tutoring in mathematics and writing can attend drop-by hours in the Student Learning Commons. Tutors are available from the second week through the last week of the semester. No appointment is necessary; students can simply drop by and sign in.

By day:  Monday – Thursday, noon to 2:00 p.m.
By evening:  Sunday – Thursday, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Individual Peer Tutoring

Individual tutoring will occur virtually for the 2020-21 academic year, due to Covid-19 physical distancing requirements.

Tutors are available now to help with writing (for any course), assignments in particular courses, praxis preparation, or general academic skills such as note-taking, time management, and exam preparation. To make an appointment with a tutor, students will need to either download the Navigate app on their phone or else use the URL below:

They can access the app in three ways:

  1. Logging into desktop URL
  2. Downloading on Apple App store
  3. Downloading on Google Play store

If students search for it on the Apple’s app store or Google play it comes up as “Navigate Student” with this logo:

When students run it on their phone the app will ask them to enter their college name. Typing in “Farmington” will get them to the entry “University of Maine – Farmington” which is the one for UMF.

There is a short questionnaire when students first access the app. After the questionnaire, on the left, they will see several options, including “To-Dos”, “appointments”, and “study buddies” (with study buddies they can indicate that they are open to being part of a study group in one of their courses). To make an appointment with a tutor:

  • click on “appointments”
  • click on “schedule an appointment”
  • select “Tutoring” for type of appointment
  • select the service wanted (help with a particular course, general writing, praxis, etc.)
  • then select a date. The dates and times tutors are available can be seen from that date forward.
  • Select an appointment time, and confirm it.

You will get an email with a Zoom link for the appointment, and a reminder on the day before the appointment.

If you are looking for tutoring in a particular course and don’t see that course listed, please contact Pete St. John at william.st@maine.edu.

When Should Students Participate in Tutoring?

Students tend to do better in their courses when they request tutoring early in the semester.  Students should come for tutoring when they

  • would like support with understanding course content
  • need feedback on homework or papers
  • want to practice problems with peers
  • would like ideas for organizing notes for exams or papers

Apply to be a tutor

Learning Commons tutors are funded both by departmental funds and work-study money. To apply for a tutoring position, please contact Pete St. John (william.st@maine.edu).

Eligibility requirements to work as a tutor include:

1. Latest SGPA of 3.0 or better
2. In good academic standing
3. A’s in the subjects you would tutor
4. One completed semester at UMF before starting work
5. UMF Professor’s recommendation
6. Interview with Learning Commons Coordinator
7. Completed Merrill Work Authorization process

Supplemental Instruction

Supplemental Instruction sessions are offered in targeted, historically difficult classes. These are group study sessions, held twice a week for one hour each. Sessions are facilitated by a SI Leader who is a student who took and did well in the class previously. SI Leaders have been trained to facilitate group learning and create activities that will strengthen knowledge of the content presented in class. Studies have shown that students who attend SI regularly may increase their final grade by up to a letter grade over their peers who do not attend or attend only sporadically. The SI Schedule is posted throughout campus each semester. For more information, contact the Learning Commons Coordinator in the Mantor Student Learning Commons, Pete St. John at (207)778-7765.